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Best VST Plugins for Trap Beats (Free and Paid)

Trap is a contemporary genre of music that has developed as an evolution of urban music like Hip Hop, Rap, RnB, and Dubstep. It has been made famous by artists such as Travis Scott, Future, Gucci mane, Migos, and Young Thug.

It’s categorized by its rude, 808 basslines, hi-hat rolls, and aggressive hyped vocals. 

The sound of Trap is heavily shaped by its roots in digital technology, where computers have allowed producers to create a sound that pushes the limits of imagination. Using the right VST plugin is important

We’ve been hunting down the best vst plugins for making trap beats!

I tested 10 products and found Nexus to be the best plug-in for making trap beats..

Nexus is perfect for trap and hip hop producers because it gives access to a huge amount of sounds. All the instruments needed for trap including drums, bass, hi-hats, pads, chords, and vocals.

Nexus is one of the best vst plugins for trap producers who make their own beats and sounds and want to move away from using loops.

Throughout my time as a producer, trap has always been an interesting genre for me. I find the sound design and audio engineering are very unique and unusual compared to most genres.

Trap has a distinct sound quality

It has a very specific sound, that revolves around a warm and heavy low end, with interesting highs and vocals, and of course the 808 kick. 

I’ve spent countless hours trying to make the right kind of hip hop or trap 808 sub sound, it’s not as easy as you think!

There is a kind of undefinable distinction to it, although this is often blurring boundaries with other dance genres.

Nexus can help you quickly lay down the foundations of a song. When you’re in the studio, having the right selection of raw samples at your fingertips is important. 


Some of the 808 sounds in nexus were a particular favorite! Check them out if you make hip hop or trap music.

Keep reading for our full list of the best plugins for trap beats on the market today!

We’ve included download links for each one.

VST Plugins for Trap Beats in our tests

10 Best VST Plugins for Trap Beats Reviewed in Detail

  1. Izotope VocalSynth 2 – $199
  2. Dopesonix Beat Machine 2 $80
  3. Reveal Sound Spire Synth $189
  4. Omnisphere – $499
  5. Loopmasters Bass master £69
  6. Future Audio Workshop SubLab $70-40
  7. Spitfire Audio Labs – Free
  8. Nexus VST Starter: £209, Complete: £3649
  9. Tromine8 (808 vst) – Free
  10. Serum $189

10 Best VST Plugins for Trap Beats Reviewed in Detail

#1 Izotope VocalSynth 2

Izotope VocalSynth 2

No trap song is complete without killer vocals. We’ve covered this before in our Best Vocoders list, and it’s back again for good reason!

VocalSynth 2 is a monster of a vocal effect plugin. Its 5 powerful modules can achieve a wide variety of vocal effects from bizarre to sublime.

The interface and GUI are incredibly fluid and intuitive. Vocal Synth has a deep level of customization on all modules.

Product Specifications

  • VST, AU, AAX.
  • Mac: OS X 10.8.5 Mountain Lion – macOS 11 Big Sur
  • PC: Win 7–Win 10

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • Vocal Power House
  • Modular Interface
  • CPU Intensive

Conclusion

This is an absolutely essential tool for any trap music production working with vocals. It is a great tool for sculpting new voice sounds and achieving the classic auto-tune vox style. 

All the effects are a blast to use and this opens up new dimensions for the human voice.

 Not many vst plugins compare to this in terms of vocal processing.

#2 Dopesonix Beat Machine 2

Dopesonix Beat Machine 2

A sweet and simple drum machine, Dopesonix Beat Machine 2 is a tool for creating new drum beats. 

It’s been designed for producers who require masses of hip-hop drum sounds and kits. These individual sounds reference the golden years of hip hop, which thankfully lend themselves to Trap.
Containing an impressive 300+ premixed kits, all percussive elements are categorized into Kick, Snare, HiHat, Crash, and Misc.

There are independent mix sliders for each instrument, pitch, filter, reverb, and pan controls for further editing and personalization.

Product Specifications

  • VST and AU.
  • PC: Windows XP / 7 / 8 / 10
  • MAC: OS X 10.4 And Above.
  • 401Mb Hard Drive Space
  • 1Gb RAM

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • Easy Beat Making Tool
  • Over 300 Drum Kits
  • Not compatible with pro tools.

Conclusion

Dopesonix Beat Machine 2 is an affordable and extensive collection of trap-friendly drum kits packaged in a simple plug-in. 

This is a good choice for anyone looking to expand their collection of drum sounds for beat making. 

It isn’t as powerful as a full sampler like Kontakt, but it is simpler and costs less.

Hey producers!
Looking for fresh new sounds?
You’ll find a bunch in our sample pack marketplace.

#3 Reveal Sound Spire Synth

Reveal Sound Spire Synth

Spire is a powerful polyphonic synth, combining the best of analog and digital technology.
It features 4 versatile polymorphing oscillators, with 6 modes: Classic, Noise Generator, FM, AMSync, SawPWM, HardFM, Vowel.

It creates exaggerated synth sounds with its Unison Engine, allowing up to 9 voices per oscillator. Unison voices including noise can be spread by octaves and chords.
The 2 multimode filters sound fantastic and are organized intuitively, we filtered six square wave oscillators for disgusting bass! Spire also has two-steppers in its arpeggiator.

It has a solid FX section with shaping, distortion, phaser, vowel, chorus, flanger, delay, and reverb.

Product Specifications

  • VST, AU, and AAX – 32/64bits.
  • Windows 7/8/10
  • macOS X 10.8 or higher

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • Seriously versatile synth
  • Over 900 reset patches
  • Dark Theme

Conclusion

This versatile synth is a great machine to create trap sounds. Great for making massive basslines and chords thanks to its FM synthesis and four oscillators. 

The amount of polyphony available puts classic hardware synths to shame. This makes producing music a lot of fun!

#4 Omnisphere

Omnisphere

Created by Spectrasonics, Omnisphere packs in over 500 waveforms and 14,000 individual sounds to inspire and drive music producers. 

This is a flexible sound source and synth with a huge amount of inspiring presets.
With an impressive synth engine, Omnisphere boasts four layers per patch, variable state filters, over 500 DSP Wavetables, Granular Synthesis, 12 Envelopes, 8 LFOs, 34 filter types.

Its double mod matrix allows Omnisphere to be customized in almost any way imaginable and is paired with its top-of-the-range Full FX Modulation capabilities.

You can even drag and drop your own samples to use in the Omnisphere engine.
It also contains over 58 effects units, from standards such as EQs, compressors, phasers, flangers, wah, amp sims, tremolo, delays, and reverbs. There many variations of each type of effect, and they can be combined to new wacky levels.

Product Specification

  • OS X 10.13 High Sierra or higher
  • Windows 7/8/10
  • 2.4 GHz or higher processor
  • 8GB+ of RAM
  • 64GB hard drive space

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • Powerful Synthesis Engine
  • Sampling Mode
  • Huge Preset library
  • High price tag

Conclusion

Omnisphere is a serious investment for many producers and audio professionals. 

It enables you to make any synth or key sound you can imagine. The amount of flexibility and depth of customization are stunning. 

It is a great improvement for workflow and it’s a lot of fun to spend time designing patches then saving them into the preset system for later.

We recommend this for any style of producer, but it works a treat for trap and other electronic styles.

#5 Loopmasters Bass master

Loopmasters

Basses are vital in trap beats.

Loopmasters Bass Master is an all-in-one solution for bass featuring over 350 preset patches. 

The ultimate sub tone is just moments away with its slick interface and deep customization possibilities.
It uses 2 layers – Top and Sub, to blend between sound sources.

Sounds are processed with an ADSR envelope, a multimode envelope filter with LFO, distortion, stereo width modulation options, and reverb send. 

The master section helps to shape final details using a 3 band EQ and leveling.

Product Specifications

  • macOS 10.12 – 10.15
  • Windows 7/8/10 

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • The master of bass!
  • 350 Useable presets
  • Not a full sampler

Conclusion

If you need basses, look no further. (Well, maybe look at the next one)

Loopmasters Bass Master is a well-crafted and intuitive sub-making machine.
The preset navigator helps many producers to quickly kickstart their low-end ideas. Lots of the preset patches are perfect for trap, and there some classic 808 bass sounds in there. Plugin Boutique offers bass master at a fantastic price. This is a lot of fun to play with

#6 Future Audio Workshop SubLab

Future Audio Workshop SubLab

Are there any instruments more central to Trap than the 808 Bass? 

SubLab is ready to take you from 808 to beyond. Featuring all the tools needed to make instant punchy basses and subs, SubLabs simple workflow takes low-end enhancement to the next level.

With Synth and Sampler modes, it also has a unique X-Sub setting which is the developer’s in-house psychoacoustic sub-oscillator.
It bundles over 250 high-end samples from hardware drum sequencers. Included are 6 signature bass packs recreating chart 808 sounds, and hundreds of presets.

Product Specifications

  • Compatible Hosts: FL Studio, Ableton, Logic, Cubase, and Pro Tools.
  • Mac OS 10.10 and higher
  • Windows 7/8/10

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • Perfect for bass and kick design.
  • Unique Sub technology
  • low end sounds only
  • high CPU.

Conclusion

This is one of the best-designed bass plugins around.

 It’s impossible to use it and not get a sick bass tone. It’s the king of 808 subs, which are at the core of trap beats, so this software comes highly recommended!

#7 Spitfire Audio Labs – Free

Spitfire Audio Labs

Spitfire Audio’s Labs is easily one of the best free plugins and was featured in our best vst strings list. Labs is a streamlined sampling instrument with an enormous library of instruments.
The free sound library has tonnes of patches including pianos, strings, drums, winds, pads, keys, and rare unusual instruments. 

All of the sounds are professionally recorded and lend themselves well to customization.

The interface is slick and simple. You can select the perfect sound with lightning speed, and each sound has a few articulations. There are a few settings for manipulation effects.

Product Specifications

  • Mac and Windows, VST2, VST3, AAX, and AU.

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • Huge free sound library
  • Updated monthly
  • Easy to use
  • Limited parameters compared to paid plugins.

Conclusion

Spitfire Audio’s Labs is one of the best free plugins around that gives producers a staggering amount of sound. I use this one all the time, it’s truly inspirational, it could even be the best free download ever.

It’s easy to use and made by one of the most renowned vst manufacturers around. All the samples could work in trap tracks. There’s no reason not to download this plugin!

#8 Nexus VST

Nexus VST

Nexus 3 is a vst sampler boasting a huge variety of samples.

The librarian makes it easy to navigate the samples and find what you’re looking for.

The impressive 256 step arpeggiator is paired with a stunning modular effects section. 

Nexus contains over 2799 presets in 22 categories, with 2238 multi-samples. 211 impulse responses, 119 arpeggiator presets, 95 effects preset patches, and more.

The new sequencer is intuitive and deep. Its window can be resized, making the GUI fit perfectly on screen, which helps explore its expansive interface. 

It comes to light with its downloadable expansions, there are an insane amount of them, with many different ones for each genre from happy hardcore to classical orchestra.

Product Specifications

  • AudioUnit, VST, VST3, and AAX
  • Windows 8/10
  • macOS 10.11 and above
  • 14GB+ Hard drive space
  • Pentium class 2.0 GHz processor with SSE3 support
  • 8GB of RAM (16GB or more highly recommended)

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • Huge sound library
  • lots of great trap sounds
  • Resource friendly
  • Flexible UI
  • Over featured for DAW users

Conclusion

A world of sound sits in this plugin.

Exploring that world is a lot of fun thanks to the design of the interface and controls. 

This vst would suit bedroom producers and professionals. It has a load of expansion packs that are designed with trap in mind. Each expansion is priced at £50 but contains a lot of samples. The marketplace is a good system so you can cherry-pick the samples you need.

#9 Tromine8 (808 vst) – Free

Tromine8 (808 vst)

One of the best free vsts for 808 sounds, the Tromine8 is an analog modeling drum synthesizer replicating one of the most used and loved drum machines of all time.
Mimicking the Roland TR-808 in both sound and UI, the Tromine8 features all the settings and instruments from the original model. 

Including the 808s iconic bass drum, snare, tom/conga, clap, rimshot, maraca, closed and open hi-hats, all the cymbals and rides, and others.
This has more flexibility than working with one-shot samples as it fully synthesizes the individual drum hits. 

Each channel has a dedicated tune and level control, with the classic decay knob on the kick drum.

It has an expandable panel with additional parameters for each channel, an improvement on the hardware.

Product Specifications

  • VST2 or 3.
  • Windows 7/8/10 only. No Mac

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • 9 Individual Outputs
  • All the classic 808 sounds
  • Familiar, easy interface
  • Free!
  • Limited settings
  • Windows Only

Conclusion

We all know how important 808’s are to trap beats, that’s why we included this fantastic free plugin. 

It won’t be as deep or flexible as paid ones, but for an 808 sound, the (free) price can’t be beaten!

Its sound quality is faithful to the original which is a bonus! This will be loved by trap and hip-hop producers. The perfect way to get an 808 kit without splashing out!

#10 Serum

Serum

This is one of those plug-ins that everybody has heard of, and for good reason. 

This iconic wavetable synthesizer is known to be popular in the trap and hip-hop producer community.
At home making any kind of synth-based sound, it also has a sampler function so you can import your own samples and use them as wave shapes – revolutionary!

Serums interface is intuitive and enhances workflow, taking the traditional elements of synthesis – oscillators, envelopes, filters, effects, and racking them in a modern display.

It has internal effects including a bit crusher, ring modulator, two filters, four LFOs, and more. 

A mod matrix is a powerful tool for sound design, enabling many parameters to be patched together to manipulate the sound. This is perfect for playing with the stereo field, envelopes, and filters to create huge magnificent synth tones.

Product Specifications

  • Windows 7 SP1, or Mac OS X 10.8 or greater.
  • 64 bit VST2. 4, AU or AAX compatible host software.

Advantages & Disadvantages

  • Creative wavetable synthesizer
  • Huge modulation options
  • Sampling Synthesis mode
  • Perfect synth for sound design
  • There are better samplers around
  • effects are limited

Conclusion

This vst offers enough synthesis power for a lifetime of music production.

If you’re making hip-hop beats, EDM, Trap, Future Bass, or any kind of electronic music, mastering Serum will improve the quality of your tracks tenfold. 

This synthesis engine can theoretically create any sound. 

It’s a hell of a lot of fun to play with. Let’s make some noise!

Buying Guide

What to look for when buying this type of product

There are a few important considerations to explore when buying VST plugins.

First, power usage and specifications.

Make sure your computer has enough RAM and CPU to run the software smoothly. There’s nothing worse than buying and installing a plugin, only to find your computer is too weak.

Check that your DAW and OS are supported, remember not all plugins are made for Mac and Windows. 

Sample-based plugins often require large amounts of hard drive space to store the audio files. 

Keeping them on an external drive or SSD will result in improved performance over an internal drive.

FAQs

What VSTs do trap producers use?

Trap music producers have been known to use all kinds of VSTs. One key vst component is the 808 sound. 
The basslines of many trap songs are made from the Roland TR-808 Rhythm Composer kick drum sample. But a clean version of the sample on its own is not quite right! 
There is a tonne of production processes used to turn this simple kick drum into the bouncy beats that trap heads love!
Common types of vst plugins for trap music producers are Samplers – for programming sounds and beats. Saturators – for coloring and distorting sound, and adding that rudeboi edge. 
Also, vocal processing plugins are often used, particularly Auto-Tuners and vocoders, look at Melodyne or Antares vst plugins. 

What plugins does Metro Boomin use for music production?

Famous Trap producer Metro Boomin has set the bar for trap production. Metro Boomin has been known to use FL Studio as his main DAW, running on a Razor Laptop.
As for plugins, Metro uses a lot of Nexus VST, and Omnisphere 2. This can be seen in videos on his youtube channel.

What plugins do I need to make beats?

plugins to make beats

Samplers and Drum machines are the best types of plugins for making beats. Beats usually are made from repetitive percussive sounds, in some kind of progressing loop arrangement. 
You can’t make beats without drums. Yes, you can use drum loops, but your music may lack originality. 
The best bet is to use a sampler or drum machine like Kontakt. This way you can program your own drum loops, replace the samples and rearrange the midi.
If you can afford it, Kontakt is great for beats, even better is Maschine, which is a beast of beat making, but requires expensive hardware.

Conclusion

For making trap beats, Nexus 3 comes top of this list of vst plugins. We chose this plug in because of the huge amount of sounds it offers. When making trap beats, the key is speed and consistency. 

This plug in will help producers to lay down all the individual tracks they need for their beats. 

Other plug ins are great for mixing and synthesis, but without a solid production, there won’t be anything to mix anyway! 

Nexus will get the groove going in no time. It has a monstrous library of samples that cover everything needed, and the plug in is simple and quick to navigate.

Explore the Nexus plug in now!